What is a Performance Appraisal?

Definition: A performance appraisal is a review performed by certain entity to its staff members to evaluate properly their capabilities, results and improvement opportunities. It is a process that frequently includes a scoring or an expected vs. actual comparison.

What Does Performance Appraisal Mean?

This practice is very common in modern businesses and there are different surveys and tools that can be employed to gauge an employee’s performance. The main purpose of this technique is to evaluate the results obtained from that individual in terms of productivity, work relationships, goal achievement, corporate culture and training, among other elements. Regularly, these processes can include the filling of certain surveys, an interview with the person’s immediate boss and an objective assessment of the most recent projects developed by the employee. A score is normally the metric through which the appraisal is obtained and it can be an overall score and a per-category score.

These assessments will identify improvement opportunities that should be informed to the employee and they can also unveil a lack of skills to perform certain activities. In these cases, a training program is normally a feasible solution to develop the required abilities. Finally, a performance appraisal can also issue a warning signal for a person’s position to be reviewed, if certain results and work environment dynamics are not the desirable ones after a considerable period of time.


CopyFactory Co. is a company that distributes printing devices for corporate clients across the United States. The company is currently performing its annual staff review, where performance appraisals are given to employees in order to increase productivity, assign wage increases and design career development strategies. The Marketing Department has been experiencing several issues and the Board of Directors think it would be good to give them some feedback about the current team’s performance.

After the procedure was implemented, the Marketing Department as a whole ranked 3,5 out of 10 in its performance review. This raised concerns among the top management team because it is an indication of the cause of the poor results they have seen during the year. After the review was finished, the head of the Department was replaced by a new person and the team was restructured in a way they fit better the company’s expectations.

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